Black label GV80

by Petrol Mum
Genesis GV80 3.5T with boats

This is as good as it gets when it comes to the Genesis GV80 range, the top shelf, par excellence, the black label edition, so to speak. Here we have the flagship GV80 3.5T AWD combined with the Luxury Package for added appeal and rest assured the end result is very pleasant indeed.

The seven-seater 3.5T AWD delivers a comfortable ride and refinement combined with the all-new 3.5-litre twin-turbo V6 engine that produces 279kW and 530Nm, paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Genesis claims this will power the GV80 from rest to 100km/h in 5.5 seconds and use 11.7L/100km and for my week I used a very similar amount, 11.8L/100km. But after hopping out of the GV70 directly into the GV80, I can say that the latter feels its size and is the less sporty, but in turn, the more luxurious of the two SUVs.

There are four on-road drive modes, Eco, Comfort, Sport and Custom, and three terrain modes, snow, mud and sand. Considering the GV80 has 22-inch alloy wheels wrapped in bespoke Genesis 265/40 Michelin tyres, I would not be venturing too far off-road with this SUV.

All GV80s also come standard with the Genesis Active Safety Control suite of technologies, including multi-function Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist, Driver Attention Warning, Blind-Spot Collision Avoidance-Assist, Smart Cruise Control and a Surround View Monitor with 3D function and front and rear sensors. The Luxury Package adds Forward Attention Warning and Parking Collision-Avoidance Assist – Reverse. You also get auto lights and auto wipers and I liked that when you changed the wipers/lights a display came up on the driver’s dash to show you the options available. 

The AWD variants with 2.5 litre petrol and 3.0 litre diesel engines have a 5-star ANCAP (2021) safety rating, but the 3.5 litre (V6) petrol and 2WD variants are unrated. All variants have 10 airbags with dual frontal, side head-protecting airbags (1st, 2nd & 3rd rows) and side chest-protecting airbags, and a driver knee airbag, plus a centre airbag to minimise occupant injury in a far-side impact crash is also fitted.

By ticking the Luxury Package box my GV80 picks up premium leather finishes including G-Matrix quilted Nappa leather and real wood trims. As the driver, you will be sure to find the perfect position using the 18-way power adjustable seat with two memory positions. The driver also gets the Ergo Motion massage function and you can select from a pelvic stretch, lumbar stretching or a whole-body stretch style and specify if you would like that to be a strong or normal strength massage and for how long.

Naturally the front seats are heated and cooled and I introduced my mum to cooled seats in the GV80 for the first time and she liked them a lot. The passenger seat also has power adjustment, but misses out on the massage function, side bolster support and front seat extension and memory positions.  The driver can also move the passenger seat forward/back and adjust the recline by using the buttons to the driver’s side of the passenger seat.

Considering the GV80 I drove had over 11,000km on the odometer, the leather seats were showing no signs of wear and tear and the interior still had a pleasant smell about it. I liked the diamond etched touch points, stitched dash and the metal trim across the dash that incorporates the air vents and the suede effect roof liner, but I would prefer this to be in black. Soft-close power door latches provide that extra level of refinement in GV80 Luxury package variants.

The GV80 gets a 14.5-inch Genesis infotainment system touchscreen multimedia unit, 12.3-inch Genesis 3D cluster (Luxury package) with three theme options and 12.0-inch Head-Up Display that can be adjusted for content, height, brightness and rotation. I appreciated the Passenger Talk button, that amplifies your voice when you are speaking to your lovely children in the back, who may be doing something that you are not happy about!?

Thankfully to take some of the stress away while driving you get a 21-speaker, 1050W Lexicon by HARMAN audio system with a total of 21 Lexicon speakers, with Quantum Logic surround technology. My GV80 with the Luxury Package was also equipped with noise-cancellation technology that monitors road vibrations and generates a noise-cancelling inverted soundwave. Media sources include Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, DAB/FM, AM, Bluetooth, USB music, USB video and Sounds of Nature. Like other Genesis vehicles the voice control only works when Apple CarPlay/Android Auto is connected and you operate this by pressing the voice control button with the masculine looking silhouette on it.

There are plenty of storage cubbies and charging options in the front of the GV80, with some thoughtful details among them. The cup holders are lined with a removable rubber mat for easy cleaning and the felt lined cubby under the arm rest would be large enough for a small hand bag. Under the power slid cover at the front of the centre console there are two USB ports and wireless charging for compatible devices. A 12V charger is located near the ledge under the front of the centre console.

Second row passengers can lap up the luxury of the GV80 as well, with ample head and leg room for adults, even when the third row seats are in use. The second row seats have manual forward/back movement and power adjustment for recline and seat height. Being powered allows these to be controlled from the infotainment screen, if required, as can the heating and cooling functionality.

I also liked that the power operated window blinds could be raised and lowered using the window controls next to the driver, this is a great feature if you had small children who were unable to do this for themselves. For car seat installations there are two ISOFIX/three rear tether child seat restraint points on the second row seats.

For older passengers there are lit vanity mirrors, a small drink bottle storage cubby in the rear doors or the centre seat can be folded down with two adjustable drink bottle holders at the front of it. The second row seats have a 40:20:40 split fold mechanism so the centre seat can be laid flat. There are mats across the floor, including over the transmission tunnel, so this would reduce carpet wear here from children scrambling across it.

Second row passengers get central air vents with separate digital temperature and speed adjustment for their climate control, with two mode selections. But like the GV70 I drove the week before the speed adjustment for the second row also controlled the front air speed and I really don’t like when that happens, thankfully the rear climate controls can also be adjusted from the front. Below the climate controls there are two USB ports and one 12V outlet for device charging.

The third row seats are accessed by pushing the button on the second row seat to slide it forward. There is a plastic step where you tread to prevent carpet wear and the gap is sufficient for me to step through. This is inconsequential though as the third row seats are not suitable for adults due to the lack of head room. They also don’t have any child seat restraint points, but they are perfect for tween sized children. To exit the third row you push a button on the shoulder of the second row seat and slide it forward

Third row passengers get recline adjustment, speakers, side air vents and smallish drink bottle storage in the wheel arches. My children also noted the Bentley-style touch controlled lights switches. The passenger sitting on the left hand side would be able to access the 12V outlet in the boot if device charging was required. There is a small mat across the third row floor, but it is not secured so does move around a bit.

The GV80 boot is power operated, with the choice of using the button under the boot lid, on the key fob or in the cabin. With the third row seats in place there would be just enough room for five school bags to fit here. Or if the third row seats are not in use you can use the buttons in the boot to lower and raise them. Something I liked about this operation was in addition to lower/raising the third row seats it also slightly moved the second row forward so the third row didn’t jam on them. This doesn’t always occur in other vehicles I have driven, so if the second row is too far back you have to move them yourself before the third row will move. It’s small things like this, which make it easier to live with one car over another. I also liked that I could raise and lower the third row seats from a menu option in the infotainment system.

Of course, with the third row laying flat there is ample room in the boot for a pram and the weekly shop. And if you need to the entire cargo area you simply use the buttons in the boot to lower the second row seats as well. There were some other nifty features in the boot that I noted as well, if you lift up the small boot floor you will find an area to neatly store the cargo cover when it is not in use, plus a cargo net, tyre repair kit, a roadside assistance kit and a first aid kit. I also liked the mat that covered the boot floor and how it neatly folded up for when the third row seats were is use. Finally, you have four tie down points, two hooks, two lights, one 12V outlet and clips to hold the seatbelts back when they are not in use.   

Genesis GV80 3.5T with bridge

Petrol powered GV80 vehicles are entitled to free scheduled maintenance service for the first five years or 50,000 km whichever comes first. The Complimentary Scheduled Maintenance Plan covers labour, parts, lubricants and sundries such as oil and waste recycling and/or removal and workshop supplies etc. The Genesis Concierge Service will arrange for the pickup and delivery of your GV80 when it is due for scheduled maintenance or warranty services if you live within 70km driving distance to a Genesis Studio. While your vehicle is serviced, a Genesis courtesy vehicle is left at your disposal.

All Genesis vehicles come with a five year / unlimited km warranty (whichever occurs first), other than vehicles used at any time during the warranty period for commercial application. And Genesis owners also receive five year’s Premium 24/7 Roadside Assistance including timely flatbed towing to the nearest Genesis authorised service facility.

Prices for the Genesis GV80 3.5T AWD start at $108,600 plus dealer delivery and on-road costs and as tested with the Luxury Package ($10,000) my black label GV80 was $118,600 plus dealer delivery and on-road costs. For more information you can visit a Genesis retail outlet, build and price your GV80 online or book a test drive.

So many luxury features includedRear air speed changes front air speed also
Second row window blinds can be operated by the driverThird row only suitable for tween-sized people
Seating flexibility and controlNo ANCAP safety rating for this GV80 variant

Photographs by Driven Women Magazine

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